New and in Need
Hello everyone. I've been into mountain biking for a while, but have hit one major road block. None of the bikes I've had could hold up to the "trails" and way I ride. I was able to repair and tweek them for a few months as they began to disintegrate, but they are beyond fixable now.
So now, I look in new places (no more wallly world or mall bikes). These are a few I am currently looking at. Any thoughts or suggestions or even other things to look at/for are much appreciated.
Save up to 60% off new 650b and 27.5 Mountain Bikes - MTB - Gravity 29 SS Single Speed new 650b and 27.5 Mountain Bikes
Save up to 60% off new Mountain Bikes - MTB - Full Suspension Gravity FSX 1.0
Save up to 60% off Mountain Bikes - MTB - Motobecane 400HT
Save up to 60% off new Mountain Bikes - MTB - Full Suspension Gravity FSX 2.0
What the hell, I'll bite the hook.
What bikes did you have and what broke. How big are you and what do you ride (rocks/roots/jump off buildings?). Check out if your area has a "bike co-op" (self service bike repair shop) that you could buy a bike from or fix up your current bike, or check with your local bike shops for sales. Paying a litle extra to get what works good for you is worth it. Once you get a bit more experience with decent bikes, taking them apart, fixing them; then get a bikesdirect bike.
I own a gravity fsx 1.0, gravity 29.2, and a moto adventure elite. The fsx 1.0 and 2.0 aren't worth it. Acceptable bikes, but the suspension design starts creaking after a year and the parts list is pretty cheap. Start with a hardtail. Better quality parts, lighter, and more efficient pedaling. The moto elite is OK for road/asphalt/gravel, but for trail, the ability to have a wide rear tire is necessary. Probably the best beginner 29er from BD is the motobecane 529. Nothing special, but a good bike to start with.
Cannondale F29 carbon converted single speed
Jamis Renegade Elite
Kona Big Unit SS/full rigid
Stay away from those full suspension bikes at that price ,they will fall apart just like the big box store bikes.
Well, I'm 6' 0" and 175 lb, and go through a lot of rocky stuff (football sized stuff pretty close together) with many large roots and the occasional downed tree or limb that can't be avoided. I jump off some drops through the woods, but never anything more than 3 - 4 feet. The bikes I had were Next or Huffy and some other company I don't remember.
I'm pretty good with repairing them as I kept the bikes going long after they had "broken" by taking them apart, resetting this or retightneing or reshaping that and even repalcing parts with suitable matches from the other bikes. This meant I tore them down to the frames multiple times and putting them back together. Given that I think I'd be able to assemble the bike without any major problems.
But if it would be much better for me to buy a pre-assembled bike I would swing that but I am also on a tight budget so I have to keep that in mind.
If your budget is $300-350, then you're not going to get much of an upgrade from the bikes you have been riding. For the trails that you're describing, I don't think any of those bikes can hold up for a long period of time either. Conditions like that puts a lot of stress on the bike. Not only on the frame itself, but the components.
I understand the budget thing, but if you could up that by even $150-200, then you'd be getting a much nicer bike, especially if you can find one used. Maybe even a 29er to help rollover those rocks and roots much easier.
If you want to stick with a 26er
2013 Marin Pioneer Trail Disc 19" Hardtail MTB 26" Shimano 8S Tektro Disc New | eBay
or add a little more money, but a great bike for the price..
Airborne Bicycles. Guardian 2.0
The used route:
Not sure what size this is. Sounds like 18-19.5" would work for you, depending your inseam and arm lengths.
2009 GT Marathon Sport For Sale
Every time you buy a product that is not suited to your use because of your 'budget' you are making the eventual correct purchase that much more expensive. Add up what you have spent in your past initial purchases and repair costs and your current budget and you could already have had a decent bike.
This is this best cheapest bike I know of. It has a good performing no maintenance air fork and decent Shimano Alivio/Deore drive components. Trail ready. Brakes could be upgraded to Shimano m615 Deores from a Jenson price match of CRC Bikes current $57/side price.
2013 Marin Bobcat Trail 29er 19" MTB Hardtail Bike Shimano 9S Hydraulic Disc New | eBay
I have no connection with this ebay listing.
I've definitely considered the spend more over time idea, but my budget isn't a "I want to spend" it's a "I'm in college and I can't spend more than this amount".
I can only spend about 450, maybe a little more if it'll make the difference worth it. I've looked at that Marin before but it was out of my price range where I found it. I'll look a little more into it before I go for it though. I would like to get a used bike but I worry about the components and such being worn out and in need of replacement.
I'd like to stay with a 26er or maybe 27.5 (still not sure if the 27.5 would better suit me or not) and once I got out of college and on my feet get a nice 29er.
At $450 being your absolute budget permitters, used is probably going to be your only real option for obtaining a bike that is able to handle that kind of thrashing. Also Ive heard this a lot lately "I only do 3-4ft drops" to me 3-4ft is some serious elevation to go from drop to flat not a lot of bikes are going to be able to take that abuse over time especially an aluminum XC hardtail.
New and in Need
Look on Craigslist for higher end used bikes...you should be able to find something that had a $2000 price tag in 2007-2008 for around your budget.
Some logical inconsistencies here. Being in college should make you more careful about a purchase. You need to save to get the right bike, not continue to throw money away. Put the purchase off a couple weeks.
Originally Posted by 68to177
Used can be good but getting a good fork and zero need for repair is unlikely in your budget.
27.5 will be the same price as 29 and 26 is not out there except as used. The Marin is good enough for two seasons or more before you want a better bike which will be at least $2k at a discount.
The drops are gonna tear up cheap bikes. At $450, you're not going to get a decent fork, so why not bypass the suspension fork all the way. Get a rigid fatbike. Originally, I thought the $450 one with 3" tires would be good, but I don't know if that frame can accept 4" tires. Sometimes worth a litle extra to get tire clearance.
Save up to 60% off new Fat Bikes and Mountain Bikes - MTB - Gravity 2014 Bullseye Monster
I want one to last through college and be decent. I'm not looking for anything spectacular, just one that will do it's job and not completely crap out on me. The drops can be avoided they're just something that I used to enjoy flying over and down. I knew they took a toll on the bikes so I only used them for that after the second or third tear down just because the bikes weren't going to make it much longer and I wanted to enjoy them as I could. Plus I probably won't get in those woods until after college so I won't need them to take the same beating until later (then I spring for the nice nice one). The other trails have the rocks and roots but nothing like the drops.